Ella from Quercus very kindly sent out copies of Elizabeth's latest novel to reviewers and here are their posts.
Lovely story of a Nun and a kindhearted man who bring hope and faith to the people of the north east.Of the highs and lows of every day life in the Durham Dales,it is a very enjoyable book and worthy of the 5*.
Just finished the Elizabeth Gill book. 5 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
This is an absolutely absorbed book about love and friendship. A young street urchin Jay Galbraith met fellow urchin Wesley Hallam. Jay became a wealthy builder who met architects daughter Maddy who he wanted to marry. Her father refused as he wasn't good enough.
As time moved on he built a town around a mine nearby was a convet where Sister Maddy (as she became ) was living.
One day on his way back to town he found a heavily pregnant Ruth who had been raped by her father.
He took her to the convent where she gave birth to a still born child. Ruth was wonderful with the orphans and looked after them.
Jay asked the doctors daughter Eve to marry him and built a house. He wouldn't set a date until the house was done on the day before the wedding.
There was a disaster at the mine killing Hallam so the wedding was called off.
Ruth ran away to Newcastle. Maddy and Jay stayed best friends in the new town.
Another great book by Elizabeth Gill, as soon as I saw this book I had to start reading it straight away.
Full of atmospheric northern fells and towns, we meet the main character of Ruth, her mother deserted the family home one Christmas and her father liked his drink too much. One night in his drunken state, he did an unthinkable thing to his daughter and she is soon left to deal with life on her own.
She runs away from home and stumbles across a town deep in the fells. Here she makes a new life for herself with the nuns, who run a Foundling School and they appreciate her help with the younger children. The man who found and rescued her is a respected man in the community, Jay Galbraith, owning pits and iron works and providing employment for those in the town.
After a major accident, many people are left bereft and lost loved ones and neighbours, none more so than Jay Galbraith, whom Ruth is more and more devoted to. Jay was due to marry, but his fiance Eve, who was not very pleased with the way she has been treated, has to make a decision. I personally didn't like the character of Eve, but I think that you have to have a character that you can't stand and others that you really warm to in a book.
As the story progresses, the characters provide a story that draws you in and you can't put down.
This is a truly lovely book that will appeal to fans of "Call the Midwife " and Catherine Cookson books, set in the northern fells of the UK.
This book started very well and was on the whole a reasonable read. Ruth, abandoned by her mother & abused by her father, ran away from home after attacking him to stop the abuse.
She was found & taken to a convent, in a desperate condition. Initially the first few chapters described other people in the story and this made it feel a bit disjointed until the strings drew the characters together.
I felt the story lost the way a little & there were parts that seemed to be there to stretch out the book. A pit accident caused several of the characters to have a change of circumstance & feelings.
The end was rather predictable but good.
The Foundling School for Girls I found compulsive reading. You realise how lucky we are if this was what went on. These young people with a terrible background pulled themselves up to make something of themselves.
The young girls - what a life they had to overcome abuse and tragedy. Their lives marked by the abuse but still helped others. How our ancestors got over dreadful lives to make something of themselves.
We should be proud they made our nation.
The book took me a little while to get into, but I think that was more me than the story.
The blurb focuses on Ruth Dixon as the main character but I think it's about 3 young women, that all start off as young meek girls and over time and experience, grow into 3 strong characters, that all mean something to one man.
The man in question is Jay, an entrepreneur, first meeting Maddy, who later becomes sister Madeline. He asked her to marry him, but her father wouldn't allow it.
Years later, he finds Ruth, hurt and almost to the end of her life, after her father has hurt her one last time. By this time, Jay has become a very good businessman and has developed a pit village, where he takes Ruth to the convent that's been set up there to look after and eduacate orphans. Unknown to him Maddie is one of the nuns that resides there. Ruth is helped and grows stronger there with the nuns help.
And then there's Eve, a lonely girl, daughter of a Doctor and with a mother with a mental illness, just a housekeeper for company. Falls head over heels in love with Jay in the hope that he can take her away from the loneliness. He does ask her to marry him, but a tragic pit accident leaves him grieving for a friend whose life was lost and and in tow Jay's was lost too.
All 3 women fell for him, and in truth he loved them all differently in his own way. This story rells of love, lost and found, but also of strength.
As a lover of all Elizabeth Gill books, I looked forward to The Foundling School for Girls and I was not disappointed. The author gives vivid descriptions of life in the northern towns and cities of the UK back in the 19th Century.
We meet Ruth, the daughter of a drunk and a mother who has run away leaving Ruth at the mercy of her father. One night he commits a disgraceful act and Ruth escapes. When she has almost given up hope, Jay Galbraith, a wealthy entrepreneur rescues Ruth from the wayside and takes her to a refuge - The Foundling Scool where she is looked after by the nuns and befriends Maddie, one of the nuns. Jay is surprised to see Maddie as this was the lady he had proposed to a few years ago, but she declined. Jay is improving the living conditions for people and building a 'town.' He too had a bad start in life and with his friend Hallam they defie the odds and prosper. Jay finds a new romance with Eve who he proposes to and she accepts. Many of the workers in the towns are pitmen and one day there is a terrible accident which will change Jay forever.
The story weaves around these people and we are taken on a journey of love, hope, kindness, despair and sadness. Will Jay find happiness? How will the ending work out?
This is worthy of 5 stars and if you have not read any of Elizabeth's books before, I am sure you will want to read this one and many more!
What a beautiful story full of hope and heartache, beautifully written, I was hooked from the start,
I hope there's going to be a follow on. 5☆🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟
Now starting The Coal Miners Wife, I've brought most of Elizabeth's books with me to Lanzarote.
This is the first time I have read a book by this author and I really enjoyed reading this book. There are a lot of characters in this story. One is called Ruth, she lives with her mother and father on a farm in County Durham. On Christmas Eve 1855 Ruth believes her mother is going to the village in Stanhope but it turns out that her mother is going to leave Ruth and her husband.
Ruth’s father works in a quarry and when he finishes work, he is always in the pub and drinks to the point he gets drunk. The next morning Ruth’s father is shouting his wife but she is nowhere to be seen so he asks Ruth where she has gone. Ruth tells him that her mother went out but didn’t come back.
But Ruth’s father is continuing to shout his wife's name all day until he’s tired and goes to bed. The following morning Ruth's father goes to the village to the pub and he doesn’t come back home until the middle of the night. He’s very drunk, he shouts his wife's name and again there’s no reply so he goes into his daughter room and does a terrible thing to her.
Ruth can’t believe her father raped her, she thought it was a dream. Ruth then discovers she is pregnant and is scared. She doesn’t know what to do, her father doesn’t know until one night her father returns drunk and he realises she’s expecting a child. Ruth tells him that he’s the father which he doesn’t believe and he tries to attack her but she stabs him and leaves.
The next character in the book is called Jay Gilbraith, he used to live on the streets in Newcastle. He would steal food and sleep wherever he could. One day Jay met a person called Wesley Hallam. Wesley also lived on the streets and they become best friends always there for each other.
Jay found a broken-down house and he decides to give people who don't have anything to live there and also, he would provide the food for them. Now Jay is older he is buying old houses and doing them up for homeless people.
He meets a person who is an architect called Henry Charlton who has a daughter called Madeline. Jay is falling in love with Madeline so Jay asks Henry if he could marry his daughter but Henry says no. Jay goes to visit Madeline and tells her he wants to marry her but she says no she can’t leave her father so Jay is heartbroken.
But then Henry dies and Madeline is taken to the convent and has become a nun and she is now called Sister Maddy and she has a close friendship with the other Sisters. Jay falls in love again with someone called Eve, they were planning to get married until there was an accident at the pit. There had been an explosion and Wesley isn’t moving. Unfortunately Wes dies and Jay is sad that he has lost his best friend.
My star rating for this book is 10 stars.
Beverley Ann Hopper
Set in Northern Fells Weardale and Newcastle, the three main characters Maddy, Ruth and Jay all have different stories to tell. This book is full of heartache that will touch you as you read.
Nuns running a foundling school, this book is an inspirational read that I really enjoyed. I loved all the different backgrounds of the characters.
Harrowing in places that will keep you reading and favouring every page. Loved it right to the end.